In October 2017 we launched a joint initiative with Time to Change with the sole purpose of removing the stigma around mental health in the workplace by creating safe spaces.
The launch of Marketing for Change coincided with our event - An Audience with Ruby Wax - whose own bravery around her struggles with clinical depression has had a deep impact in demystifying mental health. Ruby, who was awarded an OBE for her services to mental health, spoke frankly to our members and guests about her own experience and how vital it is to bring this subject into the open.
Throughout 2017 we've been focused on the wellbeing of our network through our brave agenda, led by our chief executive, Gemma Greaves. Following a ground-breaking event in April, we've been working with Time to Change to understand how to address this, setting up a working group with marketing leaders including Michele Oliver, VP Marketing, Mars and Josh Krifchefski, CEO, Mediacom, to encourage the industry to talk more about how it feels and support those affected.
Marketing for Change will encourage our members to actively get involved by demonstrating their commitment to change, ensuring colleagues and employees facing these problems feel supported. Businesses can become pledged employers with Time to Change, while individuals can show support by pledging personal action.
Gemma Greaves said, “It’s all too easy to forget that marketing directors are also real people with real pressures. Part of The Marketing Society’s purpose to empower our members to become bolder marketing leaders begins with their wellbeing. Our brave agenda this year has reinforced the importance of breaking down barriers and tackling taboos and we’ve learned that good things happen when we share stories about mental health with one another.
“It’s okay not to be okay and our joint initiative with Time to Change is a step towards encouraging the whole industry to have more conversations about mental health. We want to create safe spaces for our members where they can share stories and be open about how they’re feeling. With this in mind, we’ll also be running wellbeing workshops next year."
Sue Baker, director of Time to Change, also at the event, discussed how the charity is working hard to transform the way the corporate world tackles this critical issue. “Too many people with mental health problems are made to feel isolated, ashamed and worthless. Together with The Marketing Society we have an important opportunity to engage with the marketing industry and encourage everyone to open up to mental health; to talk and to listen,” she commented.
About The Marketing Society
The Marketing Society’s purpose is to inspire bolder marketing leadership within its global network of 3000 senior marketers.
It does this by supporting the development of leading-edge thinking and promoting the evidence of effective marketing. This is achieved via The Marketing Society Excellence Awards, its publication Market Leader and in the digital Clubhouse. The calendar of over 120 world-class events provides extensive networking opportunities and inspiration with speakers including Olympic athlete and politician, Lord Sebastian Coe, global business leader, Sir Martin Sorrell, explorer, Sir Ranulph Fiennes, president, EMEA business & operations at Google, Matt Brittin, Martina Navratilova and Lord David Puttnam.
Members are from many of the world’s leading local and global brands, including Unilever, Mars, HSBC, Tesco, Disney and Vodafone and include influential individuals such as Sir Martin Sorrell, CEO, WPP; Amanda Mackenzie, CEO, Business in the Community; Dame Cilla Snowball, Group Chairman and Group CEO, AMV BBDO and Gavin Patterson, CEO, BT Group.
The Society has six hubs in addition to its headquarters near London – Scotland, Hong Kong, Singapore, Middle East (Dubai), India (New Delhi) and the US (New York).
About Time to Change
Time to Change is a growing movement of people changing how we all think and act about mental health.
It aims to:
Improve public attitudes and behaviour towards people with mental health problems.
Reduce the amount of discrimination that people with mental health problems report in their personal relationships, their social lives and at work.
Make sure even more people with mental health problems can take action to challenge stigma and discrimination in their communities, in workplaces, in schools and online.
Create a sustainable campaign that will continue long into the future. Find out more: Time to Change